Sonic Youth - Sister LP
So now the Richard Avedon photo and the Disneyland photos have been blacked out of the cover. Soon enough the planet Saturn, Halley's Comet, and those woolly cows from the Swiss Alps will be threatening legal action, leaving only the typically lurid photo from Richard Kern as the only remaining appropriated image on the cover of Sister, which can be pegged as either the fourth or fifth SY album depending on whom you ask. Sister was first issued back in 1987, and the album's lead track "Schizophrenia" is actually an homage to Kim Gordon's brother, who had been afflicted by that disease since his late teens. It's a suitably maudlin track raked with Sonic Youth's quintessential dissonant pop, holding back the dynamic avant-punk swagger that became their signature throughout the late '80s and early '90s. It's a gem of a track, opening the gates for all of frenzied discord and volatile noise-rock to follow, including one hell of a great cover of Crime's "Hot Wire My Heart" and the funhouse fluid psychosis via angular art-punk of "Catholic Block" to the Manson slasher dirge of "Pacific Coast Highway." If you've not picked up this record, you really should. Sister is a goddamn essential album.